Did you know as an allied health professional you have the opportunity to work and travel the U.S. while earning a high income with great benefits? Allied healthcare jobs are in demand around the country. If you love to travel and enjoy working in new environments a career in travel allied health offers many perks. You can travel on a short-term basis or make it a full-time career. Traveling puts you in control. Learn more about what it’s like to be an allied traveler from these FAQs and get started today.
- What is travel allied health?
If a hospital or healthcare facility experiences staff shortage for reasons such as vacations, employee turnover, or growth, they hire contracted allied health professionals to fill the positions on a short-term basis. Travel allied health allows you to take these short-term contracts to fill for healthcare organizations around the country. It’s a great opportunity to see different parts of the U.S. while making a living and gaining new skills.
- What kinds of allied healthcare skillsets can I travel with?
Many allied healthcare skill sets are needed to travel allied health. You can be an occupational, speech-language, physical, or respiratory therapist. There are also opportunities for MRI, catheterization, radiologists, ultrasound/sonographer, or medical lab technician to travel.
- What is it like to be a traveling allied health professional?
Life as a traveling allied health professional is both exciting and challenging. Having to adapt to a new environment will draw you out of your comfort zone. You’ll also learn new skills and ways of doing things. You’ll meet and work with people from different backgrounds from you. Travel allied health can also be lonely if you aren’t traveling with your support system. In a travel allied health job, there are positives and negatives, just like in any job. If you like change, adapt well socially and love to learn, then being a travel allied health professional is for you.
- Are there additional qualifications I need to get to become an allied traveler?
Yes. To become an allied traveler, you’ll need to have graduated from a U.S. accredited allied health program and hold current licensure or certification. You will need to meet the registration requirements of the state you will work in as well. You’ll also need to provide proof that you are legally authorized to work in the U.S. by presenting a U.S, passport, or other proof of citizenship.
- How much do travel allied professionals make?
Pay varies for travel allied health positions based on the role and the location. Generally, travel allied health professionals make more than their non-traveling peers because the jobs are in demand.
- How long to allied travel contracts last?
Allied travel contracts usually last 13 weeks or about 3 months. In some cases, contracts could range anywhere from four to 24 weeks.
- What are the traits of a successful allied traveler?
A successful allied traveler is flexible, has a thirst for adventure, and most importantly loves to travel. A travel lifestyle may be easier for a single person or someone young in their career. The bottom line is a successful allied traveler thrives in adapting to new places and enjoys the freedom and constant change of a career on the road.
- How do benefits work with allied travel?
Working in allied travel you’ll receive a competitive salary and great benefits. The compensation package for travel allied health positions is often better than staff positions. Typical benefits in allied travel include free housing or a stipend, 401ks, referral bonuses, weekly pay, tax advantages, travel reimbursement, support, discounts, free continuing education, in addition to medical, vision, and life insurance. Benefits will vary depending on the agency you choose and your personal needs. Some companies will not provide insurance but will give you a sign-on bonus.
- How do taxes work for allied travelers?
Taxes for full-time allied travelers can get tricky because you are living and working in multiple states within the same year. Fortunately, there are tons of resources for allied travelers on filing taxes. One of the main tips is to claim a “tax home” with the IRS which they define as the general area you live and work. This may or may not be your permanent residence as a traveler. You’ll pay local, state, and federal tax from your identified tax home. A travel staffing agency or season allied travelers can also help you navigate taxes when the times comes. Keep records, read up on tax codes, and consult a CPA or attorney if needed.
- What are popular destinations for allied travelers?
Popular states for allied travelers to work in are California, Florida, Texas, North Carolina, Georga, and New York, and more. Allied travelers stay in cities such as Charleston, Boston, New York City, San Diego, and San Franciso. The sky is the limit for your wanderlust.
- Are there crisis rates for travel allied healthcare?
Yes. In times of crisis such as natural disasters and pandemics, healthcare workers receive $5 to $20 more an hour in addition to bonuses for extra shifts. This is because they are working in risky conditions and often working overtime because of the need. Crisis rates are available for travel allied healthcare workers. Travel allied healthcare workers may even earn more in crisis pay than regular staff.
- How does housing work for travelers?
Travelers either get free housing provided through the staffing agency or a housing stipend. Some people like to choose their housing and prefer the stipend, while others like to stay in provided housing. Be aware that when housing is provided you may have a roommate. Some people choose to live in an RV and pocket the stipend. Airbnb's are a popular choice for people choosing their housing. There are Airbnb's that are specific for long-term stays.
- How does transportation work?
Many travelers choose to drive themselves to work locations that way they have a vehicle to use during their contracted stay. Travelers may also be reimbursed for travel expenses depending on the agency they are working with. Others may choose to fly if they will be living close to work that they can walk or use public transportation to get around.
- When should I apply for a new position?
Typically, you’ll need to have some prior work experience in your field before you start to travel. As soon as you are ready and have all the proper paperwork completed you can start applying for jobs. You’ll need to have all your documentation and travel/housing arrangements, because assignments could start as soon as the following week.
- Can I extend my assignment?
Yes, you have the option to extend the assignment if you choose, however, there is no guarantee that you will be able to extend. If you do get approval to extend your assignment, then the assignment could last up to a year if you wish to stay that long.
Where can I find travel allied health jobs?
There are hundreds of travel allied agencies to choose from. ProLink Staffing is one of them. We can help you find a travel allied health job. Contact us today to learn more.
Here are a few other travel allied health agencies: